Our History

Mpingo Conservation & Development Initiative was founded in 1995, originally under the name of the Cambridge Mpingo Project, and began with the Tanzanian Mpingo 96 student expedition. Between 1996 and 2003 the project organised six student research expeditions to Tanzania, involving 56 students from eight different universities, during which time we changed our name to the Mpingo Conservation Project.

The project was transformed when in 2004 we won the top prize in the BP Conservation Awards Programme. This allowed the project to set up a permanent field base in Kilwa, Tanzania, and to complement its ongoing research programme with practical, community-based conservation.

In 2010 we changed our name again, this time to the Mpingo Conservation & Development Initiative (MCDI for short) to better reflect what we do, and to convey the long-term horizons under which we operate.